Service Credit

Overview

Service Credit
2nd Factor in Retirement Formula

Service Credit

You Earn Service Credit While You Work

While you work in a full-time retirement-eligible position for one of ACERA's participating employers, you earn service credit toward retirement.  Service credit is measured in years. In general, you earn a year of service credit for each year you work full-time in an ACERA-covered job. Your service credit earnings are measured to a fraction of week, so for example, if you earned 5 years and 8 weeks of service credit, you will have earned about 5.15 years of service credit.

If you work part time, you get part time service credit. For example, if you work half time for 10 years, you get 5 full-time years of service credit in the formula.

Purchased service will also increase your total service credit. In general, the more retirement service credit you have, the higher your benefit.

You Earn Service Credit While You Work

While you work in a full-time retirement-eligible position for one of ACERA’s participating employers, you earn service credit toward retirement.  Service credit is measured in years. In general, you earn a year of service credit for each year you work full-time in an ACERA-covered job. Your service credit earnings are measured to a fraction of week, so for example, if you earned 5 years and 8 weeks of service credit, you will have earned about 5.15 years of service credit.

If you work part time, you get part time service credit. For example, if you work half time for 10 years, you get 5 full-time years of service credit in the formula.

Purchased service will also increase your total service credit. In general, the more retirement service credit you have, the higher your benefit.

You Earn Service Credit During Earned Leave

When you take the following types of leave, you earn service credit while out on that leave:

  • Earned Vacation Leave
  • Sick Leave
  • Management Leave
  • Compensatory Time
  • Holidays
  • Floating Holidays

Times When You Don’t Earn Service Credit

  • Overtime, On-call, or Standby
  • Unpaid Leave - When you are out of the office on unpaid leave, you do not earn service credit during that time. If the unpaid leave is unpaid medical leave, that time can be purchasable (see section on purchasing service credit below).
  • Purchased Vacation - Some ACERA employers will allow you to purchase additional vacation beyond your earned vacation. During the time when you’re out on this purchased vacation leave, you do not earn service credit. And this time is not purchasable as service credit.
  • Sold Vacation - If you sell your earned vacation to your employer to get extra cash, you don’t get service credit for it. However, you may get salary credit for it. See Highest Average Monthly Salary for more information.

What If My Service Credit Amount Seems Incorrect?

If after reviewing your service credit amount in your personal account in Web Member Services you think your service credit time seems incorrect, you can request a service credit audit using the Retirement Benefit Estimate Request Form.

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